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Tag Archive: Pregnancy Update

A Peek Into Our Week: Pregnancy update (week 26), bathroom redo, books, & romance

Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram.

26 weeks!! This past week FLEW by and I can’t believe it’s time for another pregnancy picture and update.


I’m continuing to feel so well overall. Yes, there are the normal uncomfortable parts and the fact that I have to lay down and rest/nap and move more slowly than my usual pace, but I cannot believe how well I’m doing compared to previous pregnancies!

It just goes to show that prioritizing healthy food, sleep, hydration, and exercise really can make a difference! (It may also help that every day has a lot going on so I not have a lot of time to sit around and think about how I feel!)


My belly is definitely popping out more and the baby is kicking a lot stronger and harder these days! It’s still so surreal for me… but feeling the elbows and knees protruding out make it more and more real.


My diet is pretty limited these days in order to avoid heartburn triggers, but some of my standby’s right now are cereal/milk, apples with peanut butter, and a big salad with chicken and hard boiled eggs.

This basically makes up most of my eating right now — and I’m grateful that it tastes good, is nourishing, and doesn’t make me sick. Every day that I’m not experiencing extreme acid reflux like I did in my previous pregnancies is a gift.

Weight gain: 18 pounds

Check out my honest reviews on the 5 Books I Read This Past Week (+ 1 Classic Movie We Watched).

Did you see how we spruced up our upstairs bathroom on a budget? See the before and after pictures here.

The podcast episode this week on 10 Ways to Keep the Romance Alive was one of our most-downloaded episodes in a long time. Have you listened to it yet?

Life Update: Pregnancy (week 25), decluttering, and a basketball tournament

Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram.

25 weeks!! And I’ve officially switched over to maternity clothes pretty much full-time.

Side note: I know some people are big fans of just sizing up in clothes instead of wearing maternity clothes. I tried that and things just fit me super weird. So maternity clothes it is. It’s not the hip and trendy influencer thing to do, but since I’m an “advanced maternal age” mama at 38, I just don’t really care. Comfort over trendy all the way!


This week I had almost zero heartburn!!! As someone whose acid reflux got progressively worse with each pregnancy in the past and who often threw up from acid reflux and spent many nights sitting up in misery because of the fire going on inside of me, I just don’t even know what to say other than, “Thank You, Jesus!”

I’ve been super careful about what I’m eating to avoid all triggers, have been trying to drink a gallon of water every day, am exercising every day, and am trying to really pace myself and not overdo it. I have no idea if these things are contributing, but they certainly can’t be hurting anything, right?!


I’m starting to feel much more pregnant. I’m noticing a lot more pelvic pressure and the normal aches and pains related to getting closer to the third trimester. Plus, my bladder seems to be shrinking, the Braxton-Hicks are picking up, and I’m just having to move at a slower pace overall.

Time continues to be moving along quickly and I’m all *bring it on*! I know that it will likely slow down the closer I get to the finish line, but I’m loving that the weeks currently feel like they are mostly flying by! We’ve got a lot going on the next 9 weeks and I’m grateful!


Lots and lots of dairy cravings this week! I seem to vacillate from feeling like there’s not a lot of room in my stomach to eat and having no appetite to being ravenously hungry. But overall, I’m noticing that my appetite is picking up as I near the third trimester. I guess baby is getting ready to gain weight!

Speaking of weight gain, I’ve gained 17 pounds so far — right on track with my usual 30-lb. pregnancy weight gain.

How are the rest of you pregnant mamas doing?

This week, I worked on decluttering the memento tubs we have in our basement storage room. Oh the memories these tubs contain!

I’ve been demonstrating how the Eat at Home menu plan service works on Instagram Stories and Facebook Live this week. It’s a fantastic way to keep your grocery budget lower if you don’t have a lot of extra time.

Kathrynne had a basketball tournament in Springfield, TN on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. So we spent a lot of time driving and at games! Their team ended up coming in third place!

From My Heart…

I shared this on Instagram earlier this week:

There was a knock on our bedroom door late one night last week. A child couldn’t sleep and was struggling with feeling anxious so they wanted to come in and talk with us.

Honestly, I was tired, it had been a long day, and it was late. But before I could respond, Jesse was inviting this child into our room and wrapping his arms around them.

“What’s going on? Tell me about it.” I heard him soothingly comfort. And then this child poured out struggles and sadness they were feeling.

As I watched all of this unfold, it was a beautiful picture of the Heavenly Father’s love. No matter what time of day or night it is, we can go to Him and pour out our big feelings, hurts, heartaches, struggles, and sadness to Him.

He is there, waiting to wrap His arms around us, comfort us, listen to us, and be WITH us. We are never a burden or a bother to Him.

He loves us deeply and wholeheartedly. And He will never leave or forsake us — even on the darkest of days.

Note: Over Christmas break, we stayed at the Gaylord Opryland as a family. We were walking around the huge hotel complex together and I looked ahead and saw Jesse and Silas talking and walking and holding hands.

While a lot of people disagreed with my list, this week, I shared 10 Foods You Should Never Freeze.

I also shared before and after pictures of decluttering Kathrynne’s closet.

Did you see my post on the 3 books I read last week and the classic movie we watched?

Life Update: Pregnancy (week 24), our anniversary, baby clothes, and re-organizing

Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram.

I’m 24 weeks this week! Instead of the usual belly pic, I’m bringing you a baby pic for my weekly pregnancy update. Because I can’t help but share this!

This was taken 4 1/2 weeks ago at my 20-week anatomy scan, but we just got the pictures and videos back this week and this one took my breath away.

Also, when we saw this, we immediately were all, “That is Silas’ nose and mouth!!” It was crazy to see Paine characteristics in utero at only 20 weeks!! We are so in love with this child!

Pregnancy Update

And now for a pregnancy update: I’m thrilled to report that this week was SO MUCH BETTER than last week!! Honestly, I had about 250% more energy, very little nausea, and almost no heartburn. I also slept like a rock every night but 2 nights. Say what?!?

The only thing I did differently was really take it easy over the weekend and make drinking water more of a priority. I honestly think that I’m figuring out that staying rested and having breathing room in my schedule plays a huge difference in how I feel overall — possibly even when it comes to things like heartburn and nausea. Or maybe it was just a fluke thing, but I’ll take it!!

My big goals for this next week are to get at least 7 hours of sleep every night (or at least to be in bed resting for 7 1/2 to 8 hours every night in hopes I’ll be sleeping for 7 of those hours!), to have a really restful Sunday (this seems to make a world of difference for my week!), and to get back to drinking a gallon of water per day (I’ve slowly been increasing my water intake now that it finally doesn’t make me sick!)

In other GREAT news, I passed my glucose test and my hemoglobin is at 10.0!!!! That is huge news for me and it seems like all the iron-rich foods, SlowFe, and Blood Builder I’m taking are working! I’m so grateful!

Thank you for your prayers, your constant encouragement, and the way you cheerlead me! I’m so grateful for each of you and how much you care about me, this precious baby, and our family. It’s truly humbling.

This Week at Our House

17 years ago last week, I walked down an aisle and committed to love and be faithful to my very best friend.

We had a budget wedding: I did my own hair and makeup and wore my mom’s dress, we hired the cheapest photographers we could find (as evidenced by the photo quality of these pictures!), and we had to set up folding chairs at the back of the church because there weren’t enough seats!

But the wedding details weren’t really what mattered (although there are a lot of funny stories and mishaps — like the fact that we hadn’t kissed before and totally botched the kiss at the ceremony or that my dad didn’t get my veil pulled back correctly so it stuck out all funky the entire ceremony!).

What mattered is that after years of dreaming of this day (Jesse and I met when we were 9 and 10 and liked each other from the time we were mid-teens), it had finally come and we were MARRIED!!

17 Years and One Thing Hasn’t Changed

I remember thinking on that day, “There’s no way I could love Jesse anymore than I do now!”

Well, 4 kids, 7 moves, lots of struggles and triumphs, and countless jobs and businesses later, our love is far deeper and stronger than I could have ever imagined back on our wedding day 17 years ago.

We might be a little grayer and more wrinkled, one of us might have a few more stretch marks, we might be a little more tired, and we might be a little less idealistic and more realistic, but one thing hasn’t changed: we are still fiercely in love and committed to fight for our marriage.

Jesse, thank you for falling in love with that big-glasses, big bangs, and bushy-eyebrowed girl all those years ago. You are one of God’s greatest gifts ever given to me! ❤️

Want to see a few more pictures from our wedding? I posted them on Instagram here. (Just hit the arrow button to see them.)

Kathrynne has been working hard to declutter and re-organize her closet. We want to At Home yesterday and took advantage of some of their sales to get some organizational items.

Her closet looks so clean and clutter-free now — and she can easily find whatever she’s looking for! (I posted some sneak peeks on Instagram stories yesterday and will do a full post on Friday with before and after pictures of her efforts!)

Kaitlynn and I went shopping for baby clothes yesterday! I had a $50 Target gift card and we found some really fantastic clearance deals, so we only spent $45 and we are all stocked up on the basics for newborn and 3 month clothes. It was so fun to get to shop for baby clothes… it was the first baby stuff we’ve purchased and made it feel SO real!

If you’ve been curious as to whether Butcher Box is worth the price, be sure to check out my really honest review that I posted this past week here.

If you need a laugh, go watch this short live video where I try to unbox my jewelry box and then cannot get these new earrings in my ear. Oh goodness… you just never know what will happen on live video!

Life Update: Pregnancy (week 23), Goal-Setting, Decluttering, Birthday Parties, and a fun girls’ night

Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram.

23 weeks!! And I officially “popped” this week.

I kept waiting for it to happen and this week it totally did. In fact, Jesse walked in while I was walking on the treadmill and took one look at me and said, “Whoa!” when he saw my belly. And then he realized that he had said it out loud… and I started dying laughing, because it’s exactly what I feel every time I look down or look in the mirror.


We cleaned out our master bedroom closet to make space for the baby’s things (we’re planning to have the baby sleep in our room for the first months, possibly longer). It’s getting real now that we have baby blankets and baby things sitting in our closet!


This was a rough week. I struggled with a lot more nausea and had a lot more fatigue than usual. In fact, at least half of the day most days, I could only manage to be up for 5-15 minutes at a time and then needed to lie down.

I think I maybe overdid it the last few weeks (+ I was sick) and we were traveling and I think my body just got completely worn down. I tried to take it really, really easy the past few days and I’m feeling a lot more energetic. I’m so grateful!

It was a good reminder to me that this is a season to make sure to really pace myself and take time to rest.


Very little this week, since I was nauseous most of the time. But I’m so grateful that the nausea isn’t anywhere what it was like in my first trimester. Also, I keep thinking about so many people who feel sick all the time and it’s not for a good cause nor does it have an end in sight.

Weight gain: 15 lbs.

This Week at Our House

We drove back from Kansas last weekend (it’s about an 11 to 12-hour drive). Silas asked if he could wear his jammies on the drive… he is such a PJ-lover and I wonder if he’ll ever grow out of loving wearing PJs as often as possible! 🙂

On the drive home, I worked on planning for 2020, including planning out my Weekly Goals for this past week. (Did you see my post on why I’m not setting yearly goals and am setting weekly goals instead?)

Last week, I asked for ideas on Instagram to help with my lingering hacking cough that was keeping me up at night. I got so many great ideas!

As a result, I started taking elderberry syrup (thank you, Four Mothers Elderberry!) and putting Vick’s on my feet with socks every night and it’s really made a difference. I’m still not 100%, but I’m so much better than I was last week! You all are the best!

One of our biggest projects for the week was decluttering all the majorly-neglected spots in our home. (You can see all of the before and after pictures here.)

We had multiple birthday parties to attend this past week (I guess it’s a popular week for birthdays??). I loved the way my friend, Fran, chose to celebrate her birthday — with a TAK PAK Party.

We all brought specific items and then packed backpacks with these items for teen girls who are entering foster care. (Read more about TAK PAKS here.)

From My Heart…

“I’m at my wit’s end! I can’t seem to connect with my daughter at all! It’s like she just doesn’t want to have a relationship with me!” A distraught mom confided this to me recently.

My heart went out to her and I asked some more questions about the situation. Two things I asked were, “What does your daughter like? What is she interested in and passionate about?”

After the mom listed off some things, I said, “What would it look like for you to step into her world and be interested in those things with her?”

The mom abruptly responded, “Oh! I couldn’t do that! That’s just not me!”

Here’s the thing I’ve learned from doing it all wrong: We can’t expect our kids to love all the same things we love and get excited about all the same things we get excited about.

I used to get frustrated because my kids were so different than me. But then, I began seeing that their wildly different interests were an opportunity for me to learn and grow and expand my world.

My kids have taught me so much about so many subjects that I used to have zero clue about. They have helped me develop new interests and new skills. And they’ve stretched and pushed me outside my comfort zone.

And it has made my world so much richer and interesting!

Want to Deepen a Relationship?

For instance, Kaitlynn absolutely adores Bath & Body Works, so she’s teaching me all about how to get the best deal there. I’ve learned all about their scents and sales and money back guarantee. And she and I went one night this past week with her well-researched list and gift card and $10/$40 coupon and she floored me by getting two bags full of stuff for only $10.80 out of pocket — and saving $98!!!

As I watched her strategically shop last night, I thought: 1) She needs to start her own blog (but she’s not interested in blogging, and that’s okay!) and 2) I would have missed this had I not been willing to get out of my little, “I don’t like to shop or go to the mall” mentality and jumped in and embraced something my daughter loves.

Want to deepen a relationship with someone? Care about what they care about. Be interested in what they are interested in. And let them open up a whole new world of ideas and insights and inspiration to you!

Life Update: Pregnancy (Week 22) + our trip to Kansas for Christmas

Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram.

22 weeks!! And this week’s pregnant belly picture is brought to you from our Starbucks bathroom road trip pit stop (we drove back from Kansas yesterday).


I’m so grateful to be feeling great overall! It was such a blessing to be able to enjoy Christmas! I only had two days where I felt pretty nauseous and one really bad night. Besides that, other than moving at a slower pace than usual and lingering congestion and cough from my recent head cold, I am feeling so good!!


This trip to Kansas to visit family for Christmas was our last big planned trip before the baby arrives. That’s pretty surreal to realize — that the next time we’re in Kansas, we’ll have a baby with us (and maybe another child or two from foster care, too!) It seems like the time is flying by right now and I’m trying to soak it up!


I was able to enjoy most all the Christmas food, including one of my mom’s amazing Peanut Butter Bon-Bons!

Weight gain: 14 lbs.

We traveled to Kansas to spend Christmas with both of our extended families. (We’re so blessed that they live about 5 minutes from each other!)

My dad — ever the practical one! — buys a live evergreen tree for their Christmas tree each year. They only keep it in the house for two days and then he plants it on their land afterward.

We all got matching blinking light hats for Christmas!

We’re getting ready to celebrate 17 years of marriage — oh how I love this man!

My dad usually does a scavenger hunt for the kids with their gifts, complete with poems that take them all over the house to find their gifts!

Christmas morning with Jesse’s side of the family always starts with group pictures in jammies.

Jesse with his siblings… this was the best picture I got as they were all giving each other a hard time and then only half of them would be looking at the camera at once. (Jesse’s face here is all, “Are we done with pictures yet??”)

My nephew was SO excited about this Batman costume he got!

We finished out the day like usual — with stockings. The kids were so anxious to tear into theirs, but they waited patiently so we could snap another picture! 🙂

In Case You Missed It:

Life Update: Pregnancy (20 weeks), Foster Care, Christmas Fun

Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram.

20 weeks!! Halfway there, baby!

And what a week it was! Not only did we have the big anatomy scan, but we also have had a temporary foster care placement this week of a 3-sibling group (13, 11, and 3).

There have been so many beautiful moments and so many emotionally exhausting moments, but it’s been a gift and we’ve been so grateful to get the opportunity to love on and pour into these three precious kids for this week.


My anatomy scan went so well. I’ll admit that I was apprehensive going in — I’ve just struggled with a whole lot more fear all around this pregnancy. And then add on top the fact that I’ve never had an anatomy scan before (my midwives in my previous pregnancies didn’t have me do them) and all the stories I’ve heard of people getting really devastating news at these… and well, I was anxious about it and really had to mentally process and pray through it for peace.

Everything ended up checking out perfectly. Baby is very healthy, from what they can tell, and my doctor is just so happy with how healthy I am in this pregnancy. I’m so grateful to God!


Kathrynne and Jesse got to come to the scan and it was so fun to get to share it with them!! The kids just cannot wait for this baby to get here!

Also notable, we had hoped to confirm that the gender from the NIPS test was accurate, but Baby was not having that. The entire time their legs were crossed and or tucked under so the tech couldn’t see anything. Oh well! I guess it’s good we didn’t have a big gender reveal party planned!


Granola/yogurt, raspberries, sourdough toast, eggs/avocados, and salad. Baby is making it pretty easy to eat healthfully this pregnancy! (I’ve noticed my appetite has definitely increased this week and I basically have to eat at least six times a day or I’m really, really famished/nauseous.)

Weight gain: 12 pounds

A Peek Into Our Week

We did lots of fun Christmas-related things this past week to make special Christmas memories (plus just other fun memories) with the three kids staying with us — including a hot cocoa bar one night, looking at Christmas lights, having a family game night, watching a Christmas movie, going to see Frozen II (they were SO excited about this as they loved the first movie), taking them to hibachi and sushi (their favorite food), and taking them to our youth group Christmas party.

Look who got new glasses this week! He looks so grown up!

We introduced them to one of our favorite games, Dutch Blitz.

Jesse and I are both small group leaders in our youth group, so we had fun at the youth group Christmas party. I laughed so hard and it was fun to see all six kids enjoying themselves!

Here’s Jesse and one of the boys in his group participating in the Candy Cane stack ’em game.

Sadness in the Midst of Joy

Tuesday was a very sad day at our house. We said goodbye to our pet hedgehog, Quill.

He had been diagnosed with Wobbly Hedgehog Disease a few weeks ago. Hedgehogs can often live for quite awhile with it, but unfortunately, his body shut down really quickly.

I’m not typically a pet person OR a crier, so I was surprised how much this has hit me emotionally. Some of it has to do with it tearing your heart up to see your child grieve the loss of something that was so special to them.

Some of it also has to do with the fact that Quill came into our home during a really difficult season and ended up being a big healing piece for our family. It’s amazing the impact a tiny little creature can have!

By the way, thank you to all of who have been praying for our kids this week as we’re navigating a lot of new emotions with the foster care roller coaster we’re on plus the emotion of losing a pet.

God has given us so many opportunities for us to have really special one-on-one times and conversations with each child and I’m so grateful. It hasn’t been easy for any of them, but they’ve all been so truthful about their feelings and have showed such deep love, open hearts, healthy emotions, and honesty.

We are so proud of them and I think watching them sacrifice and love big this week in the middle of a lot of unknowns and upheaval has been one of the most beautiful blessings of all of this. ❤️

Lessons I’m Learning as a Brand-New Foster Mom

I wanted to close by sharing this short post I wrote for Instagram earlier this week:

I tucked her into bed that first night here. She’s just three years old and has experienced so much upheaval and uncertainty in her short life.

I saw the fear in her eyes. It was yet another unfamiliar house to stay in, unfamiliar bed to sleep in, and unfamiliar person who was putting her to bed.

She kept looking at me… her big brown eyes wide. I stroked her hair and prayed with her. I sang to her about Jesus.

And I kept reassuring her that I was there and she was so brave and beautiful.

She would lay there for a minute and then she’d look over to see that I was still there. Every time she looked at me, her fearful expression would vanish and a smile would replace it.

I sat there with her in her room thinking of how this is such a picture of how Jesus is with us. In the middle of our fear, in the middle of insecurity, in the middle of our doubt, He is there. And when we look at Him, He can bring such peace to our heart.

It doesn’t take away the scary, hard, or difficult things, but looking at His face can remind us that we are seen, we are loved, and He’s right there with us.

No matter what you are going through, what you are facing, or how your heart is breaking today, I want you to know this: You are seen. You are loved. You are not forgotten.